Four reasons for kids to take gymnastics

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Gymnastics classes are good fun for kids – all that tumbling, climbing, and balancing. But there’s some important skills kids are learning along with all that fun.

Building strength and coordination

All the tumbling around is great fun, but it also takes strength to hang off those bars and swing like a monkey. All that trampoline work makes some super strong legs. Not only that, the coordination required in not crashing into classmates, let alone managing the balance beam.

Overcoming fear

There’s nothing like doing something a bit scary, and succeeding, to boost confidence. Gymnastics classes help kids work through physical skills progressively, so they have the foundation to take on more challenging equipment. It’s one of the things that can make gymnastics great for kids who are easily bored – there’s always a new challenge.

Rhythm Gym Circuit

Learning to follow directions

Working with coaches is good practice in taking constructive criticism. It sounds odd, but listening, and using feedback to improve, is a skill that needs to be learned. Transferrable to other sports, music, dance, and even school, getting used to taking feedback and learning from important.

Knowing how to fall down

This sounds ridiculous, but there’s falling down and then there’s Falling Down. Learning to land safely, or how to abort a maneuver that isn’t quite going to plan, is all part of gymnastics class. Another one of those things that will stand kids in good stead, knowing how to fall without injury has obvious benefits. Nothing like witnessing a triumphant recovery from a playground bail.

Image credits: YMCA Toronto, Rhythm Gym

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Erin McGann

Erin McGann is Managing Editor for Toronto Mom Now and Vancouver Mom. She drinks just a bit too much coffee, is a bit obsessed about sourcing local food, plays the cello moderately well, spends too much time on Twitter, keeps honeybees on a rooftop, and has a thing for single-malt whisky. Erin is working on a novel set in turn-of-the-century Vancouver, which her husband, son and dog have to hear about all the time, and also blogs at Erin at Large. Contact her at erin [dot] mcgann [at] crispmedia [dot] ca

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